Southern Cross information
for 1/1 CAV
3/21 INF 23 INF

For date 710122

1/1 CAV was a US Army unit
3/21 INF 23 INF was a US Army unit
Primary service involved, US Army
Quang Tin Province, I Corps, South Vietnam
Location, LZ Hawk Hill
Description: The following is an edited version of an article titled "Lt. Colonels are saints" by SP4 Don Newton 196th Inf. Bde. IO. LZ HAWK HILL - Two brothers both lieutenant colonels in Vietnam, mark up 1970 as another period of togetherness in their Army careers. With one brother as squadron commander of an armored unit and the second brother as battalion commander of an infantry unit, they were able to combine several of their field maneuvers over bordering areas of operations. "I requested the 23rd Infantry Division because my brother recommended it to me," said LTC Charles P. Saint of Teaneck, N.J., commander of 3rd Battalion, 21st Infantry, of the 196th Infantry Brigade. "He had already served in Vietnam with the Division in '67 and '68. And, of course, luck played a large part in our being stationed so close together. "We worked closely with each from mid-July through mid-October of last year," continued Charles Saint, who at 38 is four years older than his brother, LTC Crosbie E. Saint of West Point, N.Y. "Our combined operations, perhaps five in all, took place around the flatlands west of Tam Ky." Crosbie Saint recalled that their teamed offensives usually involved either the infantry or the armored unit as a sweeping element while the other unit provided a blocking force. "In such an operation one of us would normally set up a blocking force at the base of a hill before dawn, and then the other would sweep down on the enemy from above," related the younger brother who served at that time as squadron commander of 1st Squadron, 1st Cavalry. (He is currently the 23rd Infantry Division's operations officer in Chu Lai.) During those three months the armored unit claimed responsibility for an area extending west from the coast of the South China Sea to the borders of the 3rd Battalion, 21st Infantry. From there, brother Charles' infantry unit watched over an area which extended further west into the mountains. One enemy force which suffered from the Saint brothers' coordination was the 70th Local Forces Battalion. "The 70th consisted of about 80 per cent NVA and 20 per cent VC working in our areas of operation," said LTC Charles Saint. "In about three months the men of the 3rd Battalion, 21st Infantry and the 1st Squadron, 1st Cavalry reduced this enemy unit in half-down to about 90 men." Both men agree that their mutual trust and understanding helped make their military teamwork more effective. Mistaken identity seems to be a problem to both soldiers, although it doesn't seem to bother them. "The confusion which sometimes results when I phone my brother is enjoyable," mused the elder Saint. "I simply ask for Col. Saint, and when they ask who's calling, I tell them Col. Saint is calling." Each man graduated from West Point as did their father. Their mutual array of decorations include a Silver Star, Bronze Stars, Legion of Merit, Army Commendation Medals, Gallantry Cross and several Air Medals. At the end of his six month extension, LTC Charles Saint will have served two and one-half years in Vietnam, at which time he plans on reassignment in Washington D.C. where he will join his wife and children.

The source for this information was 7101_404_scr supplied by Les Hines 01/2000

Additional information is available on CD-ROM.

Please send additions or corrections to: Gary Roush Email address:

Return to panel index

Return to Helicopter Pilot KIA index

Return to VHPA Home Page

Copyright © 1998 - 2023 Vietnam Helicopter Pilots Association

Last updated 12/13/2000

Date posted on this site: 05/13/2023